A makeover for Central Park's lake

Be Part of Your Park
December 1, 2007 9:05:11 AM PST
It's a popular tourist attraction. But the lake at Central Park is getting a makeover. So what's going to be different about it? Eyewitness News reporter Stacey Sager has the details in our Be Park of Your Park series.

It is an oasis in the city -- the Central Park lake, 18 acres that is now, after years of neglect, getting a much needed overhaul.

"This area has really needed restoration for a long time so we now have the support and the commitment to go ahead and really start the whole series," said project manager Steve Bope.

The work is being done in stages, and will be completed in four or five years. Around Bank Rock Bay, coves are being cleaned of sediment, which will expand the shoreline and improve water quality. When done, a whole new look.

"We'll be seeing a lot more water, a much cleaner lake body and a lot of new plantings," Bope said.

This portable dam keeps water levels constant, despite the construction in other parts of the lake allowing those parts to stay open. Still, some parts of the lake and its shoreline, are off limits. And word that the project will take years was met with some dismay.

But others look at the bigger picture.

"I think it's good if it's gonna improve the park, I have no problem with it," one person told us.

And the conservancy says that while parkgoers may suffer some short term inconvenience, the payoff will be worth the wait.

"I just hope people come out and see the changes as they're going along. I think it's important that they know why we're doing this ... it's going to make a huge difference ... it's something that will be enjoyed for years to come," Bope added.